What has a cast of billions, unlimited scenes and contains all the infinite possibilities of human expression and experience?
The Eternal World Drama
And the seasons they go round and round
And the painted ponies go up and down
We’re captive on the carousel of time
We can’t return, we can only look behind
From where we came
And go round and round and round
In the circle game
–Joni Mitchell, The Circle Game
Eternity: Time as a Cycle
It is difficult for the mind to comprehend eternity – no beginning, no end. Reasons ‘why’ are moot and mute when there’s no starting place. If I look at a circle, at a wheel, it is impossible to find the beginning or the end. Can such an image help me understand eternity?
As I look at the natural world around me, I see never – ending cycles everywhere – in the waxing and waning of the moon; in the gradual changing of the seasons; in the measure of time on the face of a clock. Nothing in nature is a straight line. Why should human nature be an exception?
The World Drama Cycle
The World Drama is a story of human souls, their rise and fall, victory and defeat, happiness and suffering, wisdom and ignorance, freedom and bondage. It is the story of the play of good and evil forces, and of the different stages through which human souls pass in five different epochs (acts). It is the story of humanity on its dramatic journey through the cycle of eternity. It is the greatest story ever told… And we all love a good story!
The Five Acts of the World Drama
Act 1 The Golden Age
Act One begins with the early morning scene of a golden age. Each individual manifests the divinity of purity, peace, happiness, love, and truth with complete inner harmony. Their loving actions and interactions are the threads of the fabric of society. These are divine beings whose respect for nature is such that they are served with abundance from the earth. Family life is fulfilling because relationships are based on mutual honesty and trust. The behaviour and attitude of all is selfless and sharing. The integrity of the soul is expressed in its natural wisdom and spiritual accomplishment. It is paradise.
Act II The Silver Age
Act Two continues with an afternoon scene in which a very gradual decline is taking place, unnoticed by the actors, who have significantly increased in number. Even though they are still radiant with love and peace, even though nature is still resplendent with colour and beauty, the original freshness that characterized the morning has gone. The actors are paying greater attention to external form and function and less to inner realities; the experiences of the senses are leaving impressions on the soul. Integrity begins to give way to influence. Material resources are spread a little more thinly to accommodate the growing demand. Although there is no negativity or sorrow, and all remain masters of the arts of life, the quality of everything is slightly less.
Act III The Copper Age
The change from Act Two to Act Three as evening begins is a dramatic one. It is marked by a massive shift in consciousness from self–awareness to self–forgetfulness. This forgetfulness of the true spiritual self creates duality within the minds of the actors. The first traces of conflict within and of external strife appear within the play. This fall from the grace of soul–consciousness into the illusion of body–consciousness brings with it the loss of mastery. Human beings become compelled by a search for power and possessions to compensate for a growing inner void. Even while searching for lost truth and enlightenment they are deceived into believing that accumulating material possessions will bring them security and peace of mind.
Act IV The Iron Age
Act Four finds the stage of the world in total darkness, illusion and despair. There has been an extreme decline in moral, ethical and spiritual values. Human beings are chained to the pillars of immoral practices and habits. Widespread sorrow and unrest have become the norm of human experience. The world is divided into many groups, many of which are pitted against each other in games of power conditioned by self–interest and expediency. The human family is at a breaking point. As the night wears on, the population explodes exponentially until the planet’s resources reach their limits.
Act V The Diamond Age
Act Five consists of only one scene in which the Director of the Drama becomes the primary Actor. He appears quietly in one corner of the stage and begins to unveil the truths inherent in the story of human life: the truth of the immortality of the soul, its true, eternal relationship with God and the true path to upliftment and fulfilment. These words of truth stir, in the actors, deep memories of their long distant past; there is an awakening. Standing at the dawn they can again observe the carousel of life in its entirety – from divinity to duality, from gold to iron – each soul melding with the eternal rhythm within every moment until it comes full circle. With love for God in their hearts and truth once again permeating their being, the actors dance their way gradually off the stage, united in their vision of the approaching golden morning. The darkness of the night slowly lightens into the dawn of the new day. As the curtain comes down on Act Five, it rises again to mark the beginning of Act One. Humanity has come full circle: the old journey of life has ended; a new world begins.
Has the script of this drama rung any bells? Have you ever experienced Dיja vu – the feeling that you’ve been here before? What if the story is true – that you really have come to this place in time once again?
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